Homebrew Con Seminars

Homebrew Con is an annual event hosted by the American Homebrewers Association (AHA). The conference includes dozens of seminars on beer, mead, and cider. Join the AHA to gain access to Homebrew Con seminars dating back to 2012. You won’t find a resource like this anywhere else!

Contemporary Experiments in Ancient Brewing

  • Speakers: Ben FreundSteve Hulbert
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Contemporary Experiments in Ancient Brewing is a study on ancient brewing techniques in ceramic vessels. Steve Hulbert, Baltibrew member and Baltimore Clayworks trustee, and Ben Freund, resident artist at Baltimore Clayworks, have been brewing beer in handmade ceramic vessels since early 2015. The experiments have spanned many phases of the …More

Craft Lager: What’s Old is New Again

  • Speaker: Joshua Hubner
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Florida has seen a renaissance of brewing and beer styles over the past 10 years, though the surprisingly rich history of Prohibition-era lagers has faded away. This seminar is focused on the tradition of brewing in Miami, from business and advertising to process and ingredients. Craft lagers are making a …More

Crafting Quality: Fine-Tuning and Creative Brewing

  • Speaker: Brian Trout
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Want to eliminate the dreaded “homebrewed” taste from your brews? Learn from a multi-award winning homebrewer how to fine tune and creatively modify your beers, meads and ciders. This seminar will focus on transforming your brewday by giving you the tools you need in the form of easy and often …More

DIY Kegerator / Keezer Design Using Off the Shelf Components

  • Speaker: Matthew Joyce
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

There are some very interesting benefits to rolling your own temperature control board/logic for your kegerator. Matthew will discuss some of the benefits and pitfalls, and demonstrate a modular design he created using off the shelf parts/boards. This talk touches on sensors, microcontrollers and relays, with some discussion of the …More

Experimenting with Alternative Woods: Techniques and Live Demonstration

  • Speaker: John Gasparine
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Experimenting with alternative (non-oak) wood species is easier than you might think. Exotic lumber retailers are prevalent throughout the United States, and with a few tools and techniques, you can safely pioneer the use of a new wood species in beer. This seminar explores these techniques and includes a live …More

Farmhouse Sabbatical: What I’ve Learned from Brewing Saison (And Only Saison)

  • Speaker: Kyle Kohlmorgen
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

In September 2014, Kyle decided to start repeatedly brewing saison in an attempt to dial in a recipe and refine his fermentation process. The seemingly harmless exercise quickly turned into a year-long (and ongoing) exploration of these wonderful beers. This presentation will demonstrate how repeatedly brewing one recipe or style …More

Fast Lager Yeast Fermentations

  • Speaker: Mike "Tasty" McDole
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Mike “Tasty” McDole describes shortening the fermentation and maturation time for cold fermented beers. By increasing the fermentation temperature during primary fermentation, “lager” beers can be produced in times more commonly associated with ales.

Food & Beer Pairing

  • Speakers: Adam DulyeGreg BrownSean Clark
  • Track: Sensory Analysis
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Take pairing your home-brew to the next level. This seminar will cover the how and the why food interacts with beer and what ingredients can best do both in the beer and the food to the pairing. From pairing your own homebrew for a dinner at home to dining out …More

Frankenbrew: Are Pieced-Together Systems Still Viable

  • Speaker: Tom Hennessy
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

It has been 20 years since Tom first made the video Frankenbrew: How to Build A Brewery For Under $20,000. Is it still possible in 2016 to put together a commercial brewing system for less than $20,000? Tom took the challenge; come learn what he found out.

Frontiers in Mead

  • Speaker: Eric Lowe
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Mead isn’t just for renaissance festivals anymore! From low alcohol “session” meads to barrel-aged meads, sour meads and beyond, the diversity of mead styles has as many possibilities to explore as beer. Join Eric as he explores some recent trends in commercial mead styles, shares intelligence on current mead-making techniques …More

Gas Stripping Hot Wort

  • Speakers: Andy WeigelJohn Rozborski
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Hot gas stripping is an experiment to determine if hot air or gas stripping can remove volatile esters and sulfuric compounds in hot wort and increase hop utilization, with the goal of improving final quality and the economic scale of the finished beer through enhanced processing techniques. Our aim is …More

Going Pro a Pint at a Time

  • Speaker: Mike Pensinger
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Tips and lessons learned from the homebrewer-to-professional transition. In short: what to do and what to watch out for.

Great North Aleworks – The Journey to Pro

  • Speakers: Lisa NorthRob North
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Rob and Lisa’s presentation will cover the journey the couple took to opening their own brewery, from making the decision to become entrepreneurs back in 2011 to finally seeing their brewery become a reality four years later. Rob and Lisa hope to inspire and instill confidence to homebrewers looking to …More

Growing Up: Building a Lasting Homebrew Club

  • Speaker: Josh Weikert
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Most homebrew clubs experience growing pains: there comes a time when meeting in your own kitchens to share homebrew and chat goes by the wayside. Those pains and pitfalls can be avoided or eased, though. This seminar will provide information about finding meeting locations, growing your membership without overwhelming your …More

High Gravity Brewing: Hitting A Target Gravity With Precision and Quality

  • Speaker: Chris Leonard
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Have you ever wanted to brew that 24 Plato Imperial Stout? Have you thought of making a 1.120 O.G. Quad but didn’t know where to start? We’ll talk about ingredients, process, and fermentation to help you make high gravity beers with precision, repeatability, and, most importantly, quality.

History of Baltimore Brewing

  • Speaker: Rob Kasper
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

A history of Baltimore breweries from 1748 to the present day, given by Rob Kasper, author of Baltimore Beer: A Satisfying History of Charm City Brewing.

Homebrew Bloggers Roundtable

  • Speakers: Derek SpringerEd CoffeyMarshall SchottMatt Humbard
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Homebrewers are a naturally curious and industrious lot: we love to experiment and expand horizons in pursuit of the perfect pint. Leading the charge on the homebrew frontier are bloggers, folks who document their adventures so that everyone can learn from their efforts. Derek Springer, Marshall Schott, Ed Coffey and …More

Homebrewing History: A Photographic Tour with Charlie

  • Speaker: Charlie Papazian
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

American homebrewers form the foundation of America’s craft brewing journey. Join Charlie as he revisits American homebrewing milestones, highlighting several of the early pioneers, explorers, clubs, contributors and beer industry friends of homebrewers who helped turned the tide of American brewing. This visual presentation will be sourced from more than …More

Hoppy Sour Beers: Taking the Bitter out of IPA

  • Speaker: Michael Tonsmeire
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Conventional brewing wisdom was that hoppy beers shouldn’t be sour and sour beers shouldn’t be hoppy. Luckily, innovative brewers have discovered that hops’ citrusy, tropical and spicy aromatics meld beautifully with acidity. But what is the best process: mixed-fermentation with dry hops, kettle soured with a hop-stand, maybe 100 percent …More

How and What to Brew with S. eubayanus

  • Speaker: Jared Spidel
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Saccharomyces eubayanus was discoved just five years ago in the rugged mountains of Patagonia, the vast Tibetan Plateau and Wisconsin. Responsible for creating modern day lager yeast via hybridization with ale yeast, S. eubayanus has the potential of being a novel brewing yeast. However, since its discovery in 2011, little …More

How Cold Steeping Malt Can Elevate Your Beer

  • Speaker: Dan Bies
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

This seminar will describe how cold steeping techniques can be used to create truly innovative beer that is maltier, more colorful and cleaner than previously thought possible. The process is simple and the flavors created are exciting. Attendees will leave this seminar with a new perspective on how dynamic an …More

How Specialty Malts Influence Foam

  • Speaker: Robert Hansen
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

An in-depth look at how specialty malts can be used to influence beer foam stability and color.

How to Brew Like An All-Star

  • Speakers: Denny ConnDrew Beechum
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Denny and Drew take a look at the different personality types that infuse our hobby and hone in on the practices used by All-Star Homebrewers of each type. How many homebrew seminars can you think of that name check Carl Jung, Federal law and the intimate brewing answers of a …More

How to Fail at Starting a Brewery: Focus Just on the Beer

  • Speaker: Nicole Carrier
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

When starting a brewery, it is essential to make great product—but that’s not sufficient in and of itself. In order to stand out from an increasingly crowded field, you must be able to craft and then tell a compelling, differentiated story of your brand and your beers. In this session, …More

How To Start and Grow a Homebrew-Focused Charity Event

  • Speaker: Brian Verdi
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

The Three Rivers Underground Homebrewers (TRUB) started Brewing Up A Cure in 2005 as a small, friends and family-oriented tasting event. The goal was to raise money and awareness for a charity while promoting homebrewing. Come learn how Brewing Up A Cure has grown from humble beginnings to a premier …More

How to Successfully Fund a REF Report: The Effects of Sound Waves on Fermentation

  • Speaker: Matthew Farber
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

The Research and Education Fund (REF) is a great resource for the experimenting homebrewer. Learn how to best design, propose and execute an experiment in order to successfully fund and publish your work. We will discuss the REF process by walking through all steps of an unpublished experiment that examines …More

Identifying and Avoiding Oxidation

  • Speaker: Brian Berquist
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Oxidation causes more than just cardboard flavors. Learn how oxidation affects all parts of the brewing process, including malt and hops, and causes a variety of off flavors. Come away with tips and tricks to avoid oxygen in your processes.

Launching a Communal Sours Program

  • Speaker: Andy Gamelin
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

In this discussion we will focus on the practical and social aspects of developing a successful sours program within your homebrew club and techniques that can be used to ensure the production of high quality sour beers. Areas of focus will include communal brewing, scaling yeast and bacteria, fermentation, blending, …More

Mock Lagers: Cutting Contentious Corners

  • Speaker: Sam Burligame
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Space and time are major constraints for most things in existence, but they are at a particular premium for homebrewers! Save both of them by leveraging the benefits of modern malts, high Alpha hops, and any available refrigeration, which allow homebrewers in the here-and-now to tweak traditional style-specific brewing techniques …More

Modern Homebrew Recipes

  • Speaker: Gordon Strong
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Gordon Strong will take an advanced look at recipe design, discussing the creative process and technical approach to building new homebrew recipes. Practical examples will be given, including a look at styles from the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines. Trace ideas from concept through execution, including adjusting for balance, brewing to …More